There's some merit in allure of elite schools

I offer another perspective to the points made by Associate Professor Teo You Yenn and Mr Fong Sau Yee on elite schools (Lack of social mixing is a symptom of inequality, not a cause, June 7; and How to dim allure of elite schools, June 9).

The presence of such schools motivates and encourages students to improve and strive towards a better future in the spirit of meritocracy.

Just dimming the allure of elite schools and raising the profile of neighbourhood schools may not work towards improving students' ability to compete and be prepared for the future.

What Singapore is facing is not just about elite verses neighbourhood schools, but also talents around the world due to an open economy and globalisation.

The concern of top schools becoming elitist is real, and the Education Ministry could take steps to ensure that elitism is mitigated and that social cohesion and inclusiveness become deeply entrenched values in such schools.

At the same time, neighbourhood schools could get a boost in resources to cater to the different abilities of individual students and aid in their progress (When poor children in school don't dream big; June 9).

We should motivate and inspire children from less advantaged backgrounds to harness their potential, instead of dimming the allure of elite schools which runs against the spirit of meritocracy.

The presence of such schools motivates and encourages students to improve and strive towards a better future in the spirit of meritocracy.

Kelvin Hoo Poh San

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 12, 2018, with the headline 'There's some merit in allure of elite schools'. Print Edition | Subscribe